Kim Kardashian at Paris fashion week last month.
Photograph: Jacopo Raule/Getty Incarnations
I read in various newspapers last week that Kim Kardashian is the vilest role model ever and got her comeuppance in Paris. Is this veracious?
Sally, by email
Yes, down with Kim! This was certainly the consensus amongst the commentariat, and by commentariat I mean specifically rightwing female columnists with horrifying byline photos. Now, as all readers of this column surely conscious of, anything that is written next to a terrifying photo byline of a female columnist is, by quality, the word of God. So it somewhat flummoxes me to question such words written by others. I frightened of this may be the columnist equivalent of crossing the streams, and yes, that is the b Ghostbusters reference in as many weeks, you’re welcome.
As I’m sure you all already recognize, last week Kim Kardashian was held at gunpoint and robbed of millions of mashes worth of jewellery while she pleaded for her life. What a horrid story, I’m sure you’re all thinking. Poor woman, you’re doubtless rumour. I hope she’s OK, we’re all hoping. Or, perhaps, not.
“How much do I hate Kim Kardashian? Let me off the ways,” was one columnist’s response to this saga, kicking off her column there and continuing as it started.
“I miracle,” another columnist mused, “if there was a fleeting moment, as she lay stalemate cravatted up on the bathroom floor, when a tiny voice inside her big cheese asked the nagging, awful question: have I brought this on myself?” It’s very the way this particular journalist takes such palpable jubilation in imagining Kardashian bound and fearing for her life on the floor that details why she’s paid the big bucks, isn’t it?
Sweetly, both of these writers arrive at sure to include a hasty, token “Of course, you wouldn’t hanker an armed robbery on anyone”, but it’s hard to hear the authenticity of this allegation over the shriekingly loud “BUT” implied at the end of that sentence.
Let’s determine a few home truths here. Is Kim Kardashian a ridiculous person? No irresolution. I have written about the aforementioned ridiculousness myself numerous a time. Is she a bad role model to young women? Yes, probably, if not entirely as terrible as one columnist tried to make her, tying her, somewhat awkwardly, to the current Guides survey about the numbers of young girls with low amour propre. And here is where you should hear the loud “BUT” in this column.
No incident how ridiculous Kardashian is, there is no justification in gloating over her being restrained up and terrorised in her hotel room. She is not Osama bin Laden. She is a young girl who has made an enormous amount of money by flogging herself to the viewable. A crime against humanity that is not. And if we’re talking bad female task models, if you’re a high-profile female writer and you make a living by contemning at another woman being held at gunpoint, well, let’s exactly say you’re not exactly Gandhi yourself, are you? A woman posting selfies on communal media versus women who spew bile in national newspapers in the matter of other women: if these are their options, no wonder wenches today are so miserable.
And let’s talk about the gender element here, shall we? Yes, Kardashian does mortify off her wealth on social media and, yes, it is absurd. You know who else does that? Scads, many, many men. Kardashian’s husband, Kanye West, for one. That bloviating Oompa Loompa Donald Trump is another. All those saddos on Instagram who shame photos of their car, or watch, or flash holidays. And while they effectiveness be laughed at, there isn’t the same attitude that they shouldn’t do it, that they’re surpassing a line, that they’re asking for something bad to happen to them, because people don’t talk round men like that. They do, however, talk about women get pleasure from that quite a lot. Women who are victims of revenge porn are trumpeted they shouldn’t have sent naked photos of themselves; maids who are raped are asked to prove they didn’t dare to liquor alcohol, or have sex at some point in their lives, or go out be in anything other than a burlap sack. Kardashian, conforming to these columnists, brought her robbery on herself by photographing her precious stones. I’m of the school of thought that, when a crime is committed, the no more than person responsible for it is the actual criminal. But maybe I’m just old-fashioned.
Take exception to with gender for a moment longer, it’s interesting that, in all the clucking down Kardashian’s personal life in these aforementioned columns, one orientation goes almost entirely unmentioned: that she is a mother. In person, I don’t subscribe to the bullcrap theory that motherhood should delineate a woman, but at least one of these columnists does. Indeed, I at times had a debate about it with her when she was defending that unharmed Andrea Leadsom (who?) nonsense in the summer. Oh saintly motherhood, how it admit defeat give outs a woman profound empathy! Unless, it seems, if that lassie is Kim Kardashian. Or, for that matter, certain columnists with neonates who seem quite fond of kicking a woman when she’s down. What was that close by motherhood’s profound effect?
I honestly can’t believe I’ve just scribbled a whole column defending Kim Kardashian on feminist grounds, a number I believe to represent so much that is absurd about our age. And yet, it seems, distresses must. Because that’s the thing about feminism: orderly if you don’t like the woman, you’re genuinely fond of women, and you try to do right by them.